Tag: love

Review: DRINKING, DREAMING, DATING AND DOING

Eloquent, elegant, encompassing solo show

By Myron My

I’m sitting in the foyer of The Owl and the Pussycat, waiting to be ushered into the theatre when a man comes down the stairs and asks us have we ever been in love?

Colin Craig

For a second I was thrown and thought this was a drunken visitor stumbling down from the room upstairs, but quickly realised it was the evocative beginning of Drinking, Dreaming, Dating and Doing.

We are introduced to Liam (Colin Craig) as he opens up about love and life, and in the small area where we are gathered, it is very personal and intimate. You can’t help but feel a little awkward that this stranger is opening up so much to us. Eventually we are led into the theatre space where Craig as Liam continues to captivate our attention – his eye contact with the audience really dramatises how intense and sincere he is with his thoughts and honesty.

So often I see actors take on multiple roles for a production only to have it suffer by not having a set of independent eyes watching other aspects of it, but Craig – as producer, writer and performer of Drinking, Dreaming, Dating and Doing – excels in all these areas and along with director Brooke Smith-Harris has really captured the feeling of intimacy and spontaneity with this piece.

I’ve seen Craig perform previously and he does very well with long wordy scripts, so it’s not surprising he has chosen to create a conversational and eloquent one-man show in Drinking, Dreaming, Dating and Doing. Inspired by the song “Diversions” by New Zealand group Betchadupa, Craig has delivered a script that is written in beautiful prose with strong spoken imagery throughout.

It’s not until the end that you realise what all the different types of “flowers” we had been given prior to the performance are to be used for, which leaves you with a sombre yet hopeful feeling.

Coming in at roughly 50 minutes, Drinking, Dreaming, Dating and Doing is a short piece but a strong performance that will remain with you for much longer than its running time.

 

Venue: The Owl and the Pussycat, 34 Swan St, Richmond

Season: Until 6 April | 8:00pm, Sat 2:00pm

Tickets: $19 Full | $15 Conc

Bookings: http://www.owlandcat.com.au/drinkingdreaming.html

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REVIEW: The Dead Ones at THEATREWORKS

Remembering those who came before us

By Myron My

The first thing to note about The Dead Ones, now playing at Theatreworks as part of Midsumma Festival, is that this is not like any other performance. There is no acting, there are no characters and there is no ‘script’. The Dead Ones is a presentation, a homage of sorts in which Margie Fischer retells the life of her family, now that she is the last remaining member of it.

Margie-Fischer

Whilst Fischer speaks to us, there is a photo slideshow of her family and the places she describes playing prominently centre stage. Putting faces to the names makes this seem all the more real (even though it already is) and Fischer’s stories seek to strike a more poignant note with the audience.

The thing that disappointed me about The Dead Ones was the level of detachment. Fischer is sharing some deeply moving and personal moments of her life yet I felt little of the emotional connection to what she was saying which I think was pivotal to a piece such as this. I felt in the performance style and language there was a real lack of dramatic rhetoric being utilized.

At times we kept switching from one period of time to another without warning and it seemed as if there were moments where we had already heard particular stories. There was a wealth of tales mentioned about which I – and I’m sure the rest of the audience – would have loved to hear more but it felt like we skimmed the surface of many of these due to the rapid nature of the changes in narrative direction.

Fortunately, these moments don’t detract too much from Fischer’s over-arching and admirable theme of honoring those we have met; those who have lived before us. It was very difficult to not simply go away inside myself and get lost in thinking about the love and loss I have experienced over the years, and the final minutes of The Dead Ones therefore do achieve the show’s goal in being particularly bittersweet and touching.

Venue: Theatreworks, 14 Acland St, St Kilda

Season: Until 3 February | Tues – Sat 7:30pm & 2pm Sat & 5pm Sun

Tickets: $28 Full | $22 Conc

Bookings:  9534 3388 or http://www.theatreworks.org.au

REVIEW: Simon Taylor’s 10 THINGS I KNOW ABOUT YOU

Fall in love with laughter!

By Adam Tonking

Every now and then a show comes along that you can’t help but fall in love with. One of the many joys of reviewing is that I get to write a love letter to it.

I admit it, I have a crush on 10 Things I Know About You, written and performed by Simon Taylor.

On the surface, this show is about psychology, a topic that clearly fascinates Taylor. He takes us through the psychology of morality, delusion, love, comedy, and ultimately happiness; but this is first and foremost a comedy routine, and it is hilarious.

Taylor sings to us, he dances for us, he regales us with stories from his life and quotes from his psychology textbook. He is so delightful, and so very talented, that you can’t resist being drawn into his upbeat exploration of the human mind.

In between the constant laughs and all the psychology, this is a cleverly-crafted show. Taylor is in complete control of his audience and his material the entire time; no line is superfluous, no joke misses its mark. Even when it’s informative, it never ceases to be funny. And through all of his antics, he never strays from the flow of his narrative arc.

The various butts of his jokes were sometimes a little too obvious, but he comes at them from a fresh perspective, and keeps them contextual. It never feels like pandering, or playing for cheap laughs.

All of this builds to an amazing finale of such simplicity and brilliance it blows you away. You leave the show with a smile on your face and a spring in your step, and – if you’re me – head home to write a love-letter to it.

Taylor’s show is magnificent, and I dare you to see it and not come out feeling better about the world. And a little bit in love.

But enough gushing like a schoolgirl. Simon Taylor’s 10 Things I Know About You is on at The Butterfly Club, 204 Bank St, South Melbourne from Wednesday 28 March till Sunday 22 April, at 8pm Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays, and 9pm Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Book at www.thebutterflyclub.com, and do it now.

THE LITTLE RED DRESS: Waiting By The Wireless

In war time, love, laughter and loss are all the fashion…

A colourful new cabaret debuts at The Butterfly Club this month – and it all began with a little red dress.

Young dynamic Melbourne artist Jenny Patrone is still tapping her toes after winning the Popular Choice award for Short+Sweet Dance 2009 recently, but is now taking a walk in someone’s shoes with her own cabaret show of WWII-style songs, based on amazing real-life stories of women in wartimes.

littlereddress

When Jenny started the Creating Solo Cabaret course earlier this year, she began investigating a period of history and music that had always fascinated her.   She soon uncovered real letters and private stories from the lives of British girls whose fun-loving, light-hearted teen years changed abruptly when their sweethearts, neighbours and brothers were called to enlist.

The Little Red Dress marks the moment when the world went back to war, and dance, song and laughter were needed to get daughters, sisters and lovers through long weeks of waiting by the wireless – hoping their boys come home soon, and fearing the worst every time a telegram arrived.   Starring Jenny Partrone, accompanied by Adrian Portell, guest-starring Adam Nunn and directed by Kim Edwards, The Little Red Dress opens at The Butterfly Club on Thursday November 26 until November 29.

JennyPatrone

 

The Little Red Dress

Tickets www.thebutterflyclub.com $17/22

Thurs-Sat 7pm, Sun 6pm

The Butterfly Club, 204 Bank St, Sth Melbourne

Enquiries 9690 2000